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Analysis: Ivanka Trump And Other President's Children Who Work For A Presidential Fathers

TodayNewsReview / General / Politics / Analysis: Ivanka Trump And Other President's Children Who Work For A Presidential Fathers 628 Views

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Ivanka Trump will in the next few days officially be taking a job with her father's administration — but she is far from the first First Child to work for a sitting president.

"We forget that these things have happened, and have happened often, in the past," said Doug Wead, a former aide of George H.W. Bush and author of All The President's Children.

According to Doug Wead, a former aide of George H.W. Bush and author of All The President's Children, there are are several examples of children who work as secretaries during their fathers' presidencies. They include:

1. John Adams II, the middle son of 6th president John Quincy Adams
2. Abraham Van Buren, the oldest son of Martin Van Buren
3. Martin Van Buren Jr., the third son of Martin Van Buren
4. Robert Tyler, the oldest son of 10th president John Tyler
5. Millard Powers Fillmore, the only son of 13th president Millard Filmore
6. Robert Johnson, the second son of 17th president Andrew Johnson
7. Ulysses S. Grant Jr., the second son of 18th president Ulysses S. Grant
8. Webb Hayes, the second son of 19th president Rutherford B. Hayes

Other examples of children working in some capacity for their fathers are found across history. John Quincy Adams was minister to Prussia during father John Adams' administration, while Martha Jefferson was acting First Lady, given that her mother died years before the presidency of her father, Thomas Jefferson. Wead noted that several daughters and daughters-in-law of presidents have had ceremonial duties.

In the 20th century, Anna Roosevelt made her mark on the White House, working as father Franklin D. Roosevelt's assistant and acting as White House hostess. In one instance, the 32nd president chose to bring his daughter to the Yalta Conference, during which he met with Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin, instead of his wife and first lady, Eleanor Roosevelt.

A 1945 story by LIFE Magazine, excerpts of which were recently published by Time Magazine, said of Anna Roosevelt, "The official White House version of Anna's job is that it is practically nonexistent...Anna works at a desk in her bedroom and does her own typing. She keeps no office hours, and, unlike her brother Jimmy who got $10,000 a year for serving as one of his father's passionately anonymous assistants, she takes no salary. You won't find her name in the State Department protocol list, which means she isn't officially living at the White House to act as her father's hostess during her mother's not infrequent absences."

John Eisenhower, son of 34th president Dwight D. Eisenhower, worked for his father in a much more official capacity, serving as an adviser on national security affairs during his father's second term.

To Wead — who had encouraged George H.W. Bush to bring son George W. on in a more official capacity during and faced controversy for recording conversations with the younger Bush in later years — presidents wanting their children in the White House makes sense, because children can be trusted. That's may be especially true for Trump, whose own business is run by his family and who doesn't have the public office experience or Washington connections of previous presidents.


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